As Fure Viten, a 17 999 Dwt tanker vessel with a cargo capacity of 20 300 m3, leaves Yangzhou shipyard in China, its launch marks a major milestone not only for the Swedish vessel owner Furetank Rederi AB but also for commercial shipbuilding in terms of the environment. It is best in class, globally, when it comes to the UN climate goals for shipping. With an Energy Efficiency Design Index (EEDI) of 4.65, Furetank’s new vessel series already meets IMO's emission reduction targets for 2050.
The UN’s International Maritime Organization (IMO) regulates emissions from new vessels through the Energy Efficiency Design Index (EEDI), in which a lower value means fewer emissions.
The current IMO requirements for a vessel the size of Fure Viten is an EEDI of not higher than 9.37 points. Fure Viten reached a value as low as 4.65 points: the best result achieved in the size segment so far.
We will operate the ships we build now for the coming twenty years, so we have put a lot of effort into investigating what is the best possible technology that we can invest in today. Climate change is a reality and we believe that politicians mean what they say. Thus, if we are to survive as a shipping company in the future, we must do our absolute best to reduce our climate and environmental impact, said Lars Höglund, CEO of Furetank.
All systems energy-optimized
Fure Viten is the latest vessel in a series of eight vessels, out of which Furetank owns four and commercially operates all. Built by China Merchants Jinling Shipyard Dingheng Co Ltd, the series is designed by Furetank and FKAB Marine Design in collaboration with global marine and energy technology specialists Wärtsilä, with the aim of reducing fuel consumption as much as possible.
Throughout the design and construction process, energy efficiency has been increased and the EEDI value has been improved.
We have developed ships since the 80’s and used our entire experience to optimize every detail. There is not a single system that we haven’t improved. This combination of interacting, energy-saving technical solutions is unique, said Lars Höglund.
For example, batteries help reduce the use of auxiliary engines, a ducted propeller increases thrust and reduces power requirement, an improved hull shape minimizes drag, and the main engine and shaft generator use variable frequency to increase propeller efficiency and reduce fuel consumption.
Gas propulsion brings benefits
The eight dual-fuel vessels will be operated with liquefied biomethane (bioLNG/LBG) or liquefied natural gas (LNG). Gas propulsion provides major climate, environmental and health benefits compared to fuel oil.
In combination with the technical optimizations, emissions of carbon dioxide (CO2) have been reduced by 55 percent compared to older vessels and nitrogen oxides (NOx) by 86 percent. Emissions of sulfur oxides (SOx) and hazardous particulate matter (PM) are essentially completely eliminated.
The next step will be to operate the ships completely without fossil fuels. We are in the process of securing the supply of larger quantities of biogas within a year or so, through an exclusive agreement with a supplier. My view is that in 2030 we will run these vessels largely on LBG with zero fossil emissions, said Lars Höglund.
First in Europe with full shore power
Fure Viten, and its preceding sister vessel Fure Vinga, are both the very first tankers in Europe that are fully equipped to operate the energy-demanding cargo pumps with 6.6 kV high voltage shore power. This will reduce emissions even further as soon as ports offer the opportunity.
The solution is being developed in collaboration with the Port of Gothenburg, Sweden, and the Port of Rotterdam, the Netherlands that are currently in the process of developing the full capacity power connection required to operate the pumps.
It is an important effort, as the emissions at the port can account for up to 20 percent of the total emissions from a tanker, in an environment that is often even more sensitive to pollution and noise than the open sea.
Reaches IMO target for 2050
With the delivery of Fure Viten, the average CO2 emissions from Furetank’s intermediate fleet have been decreased by 50 percent compared to 2008. Already today the vessel series fulfills its part of the IMO’s total emission target for the world fleet: to halve emissions by 2050.